Sharp, crisp smells in the packing shed,
another year’s crop despatched
along conveyors, boxed, crated
loaded onto trucks: our village industry
of pickers, sorters, packers,
ladders propped among branches,
trugs of cookers and eaters,
a methodical tree-by-tree advance.
All I would do to take you there –
to those orchards beside our lane,
their close fruit-heavy ranks,
some time towards the tail-end
of a Cold War summer
of beer gardens and mown grass –
all I can do amounts to these words,
the taste of these apples.